17/11/2003
Press Release
GA/10209



Fifty-eighth General Assembly

Plenary

62nd Meeting* (AM)


GENERAL ASSEMBLY ELECTS MEMBERS TO INTERNATIONAL TRADE LAW COMMISSION,


COMMITTEE ON PROGRAMME AND COORDINATION


Also Adopts Text on UN Support for New Restored Democracies


The General Assembly this morning elected 43 members of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law, and seven members of the Committee for Programme and Coordination.


As the election of 43 members to the Commission was to proceed in two parts, the Assembly elected, in the first instance, 19 new members to replace those members whose terms of office would expire on 13 June 2004 –- the last day prior to the opening of the thirty-seventh session of the Commission.


The outgoing members of the Commission –- eligible for immediate re-election –- were Austria, Burkina Faso, Colombia, Fiji, Honduras, Hungary, India, Iran, Italy, Kenya, Lithuania, Paraguay, Romania, Spain, Sudan, Thailand, Uganda, United States and Uruguay.  Thus, the new members should comprise respectively:  four members from African States, four from Asian States, three from Eastern European States, four from Latin American and Caribbean States, and four from Western European and other States.


Given the regional groups’ endorsement of each candidate for membership on the Commission, the new members elected to the Commission, by acclamation and for a six-year term beginning on 14 June 2004, were Austria, Belarus, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, India, Italy, Kenya, Madagascar, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Paraguay, Serbia and Montenegro, Spain, Thailand, Uganda, United States and Venezuela.


In the second instance, the Assembly elected 24 additional members of the Commission, 11 of which would serve six-year terms of office beginning on 14 June 2004.  The other 13, drawn by lots from among the newly elected additional members after the election, would serve terms of office beginning on 14 June 2004 and expiring on the last day prior to the beginning of the fortieth session of the Commission, in 2007.


The new additional members were elected on the following basis –- five from African States, seven from Asian States, three from Eastern European States, four from Latin American and Caribbean States, and five from Western European and other States.  The Assembly elected, by acclamation, those candidates endorsed by the regional groups, namely, Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Fiji, Gabon, Iran, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Lithuania, Poland, Qatar, Republic of Korea, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Tunisia, Turkey, Uruguay and Zimbabwe.


With the drawing of lots, which were organized so that two members from African States, four from Asian States, two from Eastern European States, three from Latin American and Caribbean States, and two from Western European and other States would be drawn, it was decided that Argentina, Belgium, Chile, Croatia, Jordan, Lithuania, Qatar, Republic of Korea, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, Turkey and Uruguay would serve terms of office on the Commission beginning on 14 June 2004, and ending in 2007.


The other 11 newly elected additional members would join the 19 members newly elected to replace outgoing members in serving six-year terms of office beginning on 14 June 2004.  Those members were Algeria, Australia, Austria, Belarus, Colombia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Fiji, Gabon, Guatemala, India, Iran, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Lebanon, Madagascar, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Paraguay, Poland, Serbia and Montenegro, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Uganda, United States, Venezuela and Zimbabwe.


With regard to the Committee for Programme and Coordination, the Assembly was reminded in a note by the Secretary-General, contained in document A/58/552, that the members of the Committee were nominated by the Economic and Social Council and elected by the Assembly.  As the outgoing members of the Committee –- eligible for immediate re-election –- were the Bahamas, Botswana, France, Mexico, Russian Federation, United Republic of Tanzania and the United States, the seven vacancies would be filled by two members from African States, one member from Eastern European States, two members from Latin American and Caribbean States, and two members from Western European and other States.


The Assembly thus elected by acclamation the States nominated by the Economic and Social Council for three-year terms of office beginning on 1 January 2004 –- the Bahamas, Comoros, France, Mexico, Russian Federation, United States and Zimbabwe.


In other action today, the Assembly adopted, by consensus and as orally amended, a resolution on support by the United Nations system for the efforts of governments to promote and consolidate new or restored democracies, contained in document A/58/L.15.  In doing so, the Assembly recognized that the United Nations had an important role to play in providing timely, appropriate and coherent support to the efforts of governments to achieve democratization and good governance within the context of their development efforts, and stressed that the activities of the Organization must be undertaken in accordance with the Charter. 


Also, the Assembly requested the Secretary-General to examine options for strengthening the support provided by the United Nations system for the efforts of Member States to consolidate democracy and good governance.


Introducing the text, Mongolia’s representative said that, despite the momentum provided by the Ulaanbaatar Conference of New or Restored Democracies, there was still much to be done in making the work of the United Nations in the area of supporting democracy more integrated and effective.


Speaking after the text’s adoption and on behalf of the Community of Democracies, the representative of Chile said that, at its recent ministerial meeting, the Community had reiterated its commitment to the continued development of democracy at all levels. Members of that group had, therefore, supported today’s resolution.


The General Assembly will reconvene at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, 24 November, to begin its consideration of the Law of the Sea.


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*     Press Release GA/10208 of 11 November should have been numbered the 60th and     61st meetings (AM & PM).